NALDA Establishes Animal Husbandry Farm to Unlock Jobs for 400 Youths in Sokoto

•Initiative to check farmer/herder clashes

James Emejo in Abuja

The National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) has established an animal husbandry farm with a cow milking parlour in Sokoto State.

The NALDA is an agency of the federal government that is under the direct supervision of President Muhammadu Buhari – and is charged with the responsibility to recover abandoned government lands for the development of agriculture to boost youth employment and achieve food security.

The Executive Secretary, NALDA, Paul Ikonne, said the farm would generate over 400 direct jobs for the people of the state and achieve self-sufficiency in food production.

He said the initiative would also restrict the movement of cattle which had often caused friction between herders and farmers.

He told THISDAY that the concept of animal husbandry was broader and all-inclusive than cattle ranching.

Speaking after an inspection of the farm and the poultry feed mill facility, Ikonne said expressed satisfaction with the level of work at the facilities.

He explained that the essence of establishing a modern animal husbandry facility with 500-capacity cow pens, 200-capacity milking parlour, and Napier grass on 50 hectares, including the construction of clinics/veterinary sections was in line with Buhari’s directive on NALDA’s mandate.

Ikonne said NALDA was committed to achieving food security and development, assuring that the farm would generate employment, hygienic milk production and cow fattening for meat.

Moreover, he said the farm would train and encourage young farmers to go into animal husbandry farming and animal food formulation.

He added, “The employment chain will not be anything less than 400, consisting of workers who would be directly involved in these activities, outside the output, which is achieving food sufficiency.”

He explained that, “NALDA is in partnership with Prime Ranch Limited, which donated the 100 hectares of land where we are establishing the animal husbandry farm, Napier grass field and will cultivate maize and millet on 30 hectares of the said land.

“The establishment of the Napier grass field is to ensure feed production for the cows as that will eliminate the roaming around of the animals in search of feed, thereby curtailing farmer/herder clash.

“The milking parlour will serve both the cows in the farm and other animal husbandry farmers who would want their cows milked in a hygienic way.

“Prime Ranch will manage the farm on completion based on their wealth of experience in animal husbandry. This type of partnership is sustainable, and productive and should be encouraged in order for us to achieve food security and development.”

However, Founder, Prime Ranch Limited, Nafiu Yakubi, described the partnership with NALDA as positive for the development of rural agriculture. 

He added, “The thinking when we incorporated Prime Ranch years back is to have a ranch kind of arrangement whereby we grow our animals, grow their feeds, fatten them, and sell them off to the market. The partnership with NALDA is a very cordial one. They support us in all areas that we need support from them.

“Arising from this partnership with NALDA, you have seen the feed mill. We are currently producing feed for our poultry and other NALDA poultry farmers.”

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